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Nation makes impressive strides in smart manufacturing sector

Ouyang Shijia
Updated: Oct 16,2018 10:22 AM     China Daily

China is transforming from the “world factory” to a new smart manufacturing powerhouse, as the nation’s smart manufacturing market is expected to exceed 220 billion yuan ($32 billion) by 2020, according to a new report.

The nation, the world’s largest smart manufacturing market, has enjoyed 18.4 percent year-on-year growth in the domestic smart manufacturing systematic solution sector, and the market hit 106 billion yuan in 2016, according to the latest China annual intelligent smart manufacturing development report released by the China Center for Information Industry Development.

The report, released on Oct 12 at the opening ceremony of the World Intelligent Manufacturing Summit in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, shows that China has been the world’s largest industrial robot market for five consecutive years. In 2017, China produced over 130,000 industrial robots with a 68.1 percent year-on-year increase, accounting for one third of the global market.

“China’s economy is moving from high-speed development to high-quality growth,” Xin Guobin, vice-minister of industry and information technology, said during the opening ceremony. “We will continue to boost the healthy development of smart manufacturing, strengthen the construction of industrial internet and public service platforms, build the ability to protect data security, cultivate a group of talents good at both manufacturing technologies and the application of informatization.”

Xin reiterated that the country’s efforts have actually borne fruit in recent years, as the central and local governments have introduced a series of supportive policies to foster the initial smart manufacturing system. The nation has also made breakthroughs in key fields, built the initial standards and the industrial internet system structure, Xin said.

So far, the nation has built 208 digital workshops and smart factories and over 100 intelligent manufacturing standard test platforms, the report said.

Specifically, the report said the country had developed four major smart manufacturing clusters in the Yangtze River Delta, Bohai Bay Rim, Pearl River Delta and the Midwest region. Among them, the Yangtze River Delta region has created a more vibrant economy and is moving faster in boosting smart manufacturing.

Another 2018 China Smart Manufacturing Report published by Deloitte said China’s smart manufacturing had entered a period of high-speed growth, and smart manufacturing has substantially improved its contribution to domestic industrial companies’ profits.

The report highlighted five priorities in smart manufacturing deployment, including digital factory, tapping into equipment and user value, industrial internet of things, business model restructuring and artificial intelligence.

“To succeed, companies need to enhance the capabilities in business model optimization, innovation management and cloud deployment for business model reconstruction,” the report said.